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City of Lowell implementing odd-even outdoor water restriction

Due to the recent hot, dry weather, the city and township has seen a double-digit spike in water demand.

LOWELL, Mich. — An outdoor water restriction begins in Lowell Monday and will continue through Sept. 30, the city says.

The City of Lowell and Lowell Charter Township says the restriction impacts municipal water customers and was put in place to minimize the burden on the city's water treatment plant through the summer.

Under the restriction, outdoor watering is allowed for properties in the city and township with an address that ends in an odd number on odd days, and even number on even days.

For example, an address of 611 can water on the first, third, fifth, seventh, etc. day of the month. For properties with an even address – for example, 610 – outdoor watering is allowing on the second, fourth, sixth, eighth, etc. day of the month.

Due to the recent hot, dry weather, the city has seen a double-digit spike in water demand. However, the restriction does not include water use for drinking or bathing. 

“With recent demand, our water treatment plant is pushing the limit on the amount of water it can produce,” said Lowell City Manager Mike Burns, “Because outdoor watering makes up a significant portion of this consumption, we are asking our community to partner with us as we take proactive steps to avoid an outright ban on landscape irrigation."

Lowell Charter Township Supervisor Jerry Hale joined Burns in asking for the community’s help this summer.

“Following an odd-even watering schedule will help us level the demand and maintain the sustainability of the current water system,” said Hale, “We know this short-term restriction will have long-term dividends for all of us.”

Growth in the area has also added to the strain on the water system. 

"In the last few years, we've seen a lot of new subdivisions being built in the township," said Burns, "As they're continuing to build more homes and more more more facilities and things of that nature, it's causing a strain on our system."

Burns said the plant has a capacity of 1.5 million gallons a day. One day this season, they reached that capacity. Last week, multiple days were at 1.2 to 1.3 million gallons used. 

He said there needs to be a plan, possibly the plant needs to expand. Burns said the City and the Charter Township are working together to find a solution. Both the City and parts of the Township use the same treatment plant. 

"But I mean, this is not a long term solution," said Burns about the water restriction, "This is a band aid to the bigger problem."


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